|The tear-down of the Vihara|
The 4-month monastery investigation turned out much better than expected. Originally Ajahn Jayanto was just going to come to Boston just to explore the idea, to see what kind of support there was, and, perhaps, look at a few candidate properties. There was the expectation that he would have to return the following year for additional investigation.
What actually happened, though, was that there was an overwhelming amount of interest and support from the surrounding lay community, as well as an excellent property with owners who were very interested in selling it to the monastics. The "lay stewards" for the monastics were also able to collect enough funds to have the Ajahn Jayanato and 1-2 other monks return next year. It was quite extraordinary from my vantage point seeing the enthusiasm and how fast things moved.
My plans are to head off to Abhayagiri in late December, first serving on the Winter retreat followed by ordaining as an Anagarika sometime thereafter. Of course, these are "plans," and it's extremely vivid that anything can change. As I mentioned in previous blog posts, I have a health complication that may make the Anagarika'ship not possible. But there's no way of knowing other than moving on. I very much am interested in going down this road, now more than ever. That much I know. But the future feels very uncertain. Who knows where I will be one year from now?
As of this writing, I am in Roanoke, Virginia, headed off for a short visit with Ajahn Dick Sīlaratano and his new monastery, the Forest Dhamma Monastery in Lexington, Virginia.
|Ajahn Dick receiving alms during Kathina 2012|
And so, the time is right for me to finish this blog post. Until later this month, I will be "off-the-grid." May I bid you wellness and happiness.